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  Access Today: Summer 1999 issue

Access Today, Summer 1999

Inside this issue:

NCA to Team with the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability

The NCA is entering into a contractual relationship with the University of Illinois-Chicago to partner with the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability. UIC has just received a four year grant from the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta to develop a center that will provide a comprehensive database and resource for all aspects of physical activity and disability.

The project is collaborating with disability organizations throughout the country to collect and disseminate information to researchers, practitioners, consumers, family members, and the public. This will include establishing a massive database of both published and unpublished material. NCA will be the primary subcontractor in the area of recreation and parks, while the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago will provide a similar role in the areas of sports and physical activity related to disability. The Center will have an extensive web-based information system and will conduct training and provide consultation nationwide. This partnership will provide funding for NCA to employ additional staff in order to carry out the objectives of the project.

For more information contact either Gary Robb or Todd Paxton at the NCA. They can be reached at 765-349-9240.

Access to GOLF Symposium

July 21, 1999
Braemar Golf Course
Edina, Minnesota

The National Center on Accessibility and the Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute are co-sponsoring an educational symposium designed for golf pros and health care professionals. The purpose of the symposium is to provide instruction, equipment resources and experience for professionals in order to increase awareness of current issues and innovations for providing access to golfers with disabilities. The symposium will run from 8:30am to 4:30pm and cover the following:

  • Techniques and strategies for instructing golfers with physical disabilities
  • Experience adaptive techniques and interact with golfers with disabilities
  • Become familiar with design and equipment advances and community resources for program development
  • Increase awareness of disabilities
  • Learn about current legal guidelines for course design, facility planning and policy development
  • Understand issues in providing access, USGA rules, etiquette and pace of play.

Cost : $20.00 for PGA Apprentice and Students

$30.00 for PGA Members and Health Care


$10.00 for ATRA CEUs

Lunch is included in the cost.

Please call Susan Hagel at the Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute for more information or to register for the symposium please call 612-863-5712 or email: shagel@allina.com

New Staff at NCA

The National Center on Accessibility is pleased to welcome two new staff members:

Cameron is very familiar with Bradford Woods, the property on which the NCA is located, as he spent his internship here in 1994. Cameron went on to obtain his Masters Degree in Forestry from Southern Illinois University and now joins the NCA as the Accessibility Specialist. Cameron will be working closely with Ray Bloomer, Technical Assistance Director of the NCA, in responding to questions and problems with accessibility. Cameron will also be working with the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability Project.

Deb returns to the NCA from Indiana University, where she is a doctoral candidate and part-time lecturer. Deb will be the Information Specialist for the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability project. Debs research interests are therapeutic recreation, multicultural education and disability studies. In her free time Deb spends time with her three year old daughter and one year old son.  Deb will also be actively involved in the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability.

NCA in Final Stages of Completing USGA Funded Project

The National Center on Accessibility is completing the data analysis of a project funded by the USGA to determine the status of golfers with disabilities in the game of golf. During January-March of 1999, 45 personal interviews were conducted with golf course owners and operators in Florida, South Carolina, Utah and Missouri. In addition, telephone interviews were conducted with 18 organizations or individuals providing instruction to golfers with disabilities and with 16 golfers with disabilities.

All interviews were structured to elicit responses relative to the policies, perceptions and barriers that affect golfers with disabilities being fully integrated into the game. Results of the project will be available in late summer and will be distributed to golf courses and programs around the country. Information requests on this project should be directed to Gary Robb at the NCA, 765-349-9240.

Indianapolis Parks

The NCA provides information on accessibility related issues for people with disabilities in the fields of parks, recreation, and tourism. The NCA staff completed a preliminary accessibility assessment of the Indianapolis Parks and Recreation Department in early 1999. Indy Parks contracted with NCA to conduct physical and programmatic assessment at several park facilities and to make recommendations on accessibility improvements. Additionally, the report that was submitted to Indy Parks provided recommendations on a process to follow to conduct a comprehensive assessment of Indy Parks. Additionally, the report that was submitted to Indy Parks provided recommendations on a process to follow to conduct a comprehensive assessment of Indy Parks.

Access Boards Regulatory Negotiating Committee on Outdoor Developed Areas goes into Overtime....

The regulatory negotiations on Outdoor Developed Areas, as reported in recent issues of Access Today, will continue throughout the summer. The Committee has yet to finish its work on standards related to trails and therefore needed a second delay in presenting its recommendations to the Access Board. The Committee will meet in final negotiated sessions on July 15-16th with the recommendations now scheduled to go to the Board in September. Stay tuned!

Aunt ADA

Dear Aunt Ada,

I work in a park that has a strictly enforced prohibition against pets. Recently, an older visitor came into the park with his large dog and a note from his physician which stated that the gentleman had severe arthritis and that his "pet " was needed as his service animal. Until we receive clarification, our staff has assumed he was correct in claiming that he had the right to consider his "pet" to be a service animal. Aunt Ada, we have several questions. Do service animals have to be certified or registered in some way? Does the training school or facility provide some identification? What kind of behavior can be expected of the animal? Finally, can we ask the visitor to prove they have a disability? Thanks for your help.

Harry Bassett

Dear Mr. Bassett,

Congratulations! You and your staff made the right decision to wait on some clarification before acting. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), an animal only has to perform the assistance needed by the individual with a disability in order to be a "service animal." Although many training schools and facilities do have some type of certification and identification which the user may keep on his/her person, neither is required by the ADA. Most training facilities for service animals will teach the animal how to behave in public and around other animals. This may be a problem with some animals that are not trained by professionals. If a service animal is behaving in a disruptive manner, then steps may be taken to remove the anima l. Otherwise, individuals with disabilities and their service animals are allowed in all areas open to the public. Furthermore, there is absolutely no requirement for a person to prove they have a disability.

For further information on this issue, contact the U.S. Department of Justice ADA hotline at 800-514-0301 or visit their web site at www.usdoj.gov.

Good luck.

Aunt ADA

Pennsylvania Training: Partners Program a Success

This past spring, the National Center on Accessibility partnered with the Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks to provide an Accessibility Training program to 300 of their employees. The program was provided f or Park Rangers, Environmental Educators, Park Managers, Maintenance Supervisors, Landscape Architects, Planners, and Engineers. The training programs were held three different times, twice in State College, PA and the final program in Johnstown, PA. By providing multiple training programs we were able to reach a greater number of employees and reduce training costs.

For further information on possible training partners programs in your region, please contact the NCA 765-349-9240 or email nca@indiana.edu

Upcoming Courses

Retrofitting for Accessibility
Gatlinburg, TN
September 13-16, 1999

Join the National Center on Accessibility in Gatlinburg, TN in the heart of the Smoky Mountains for the Retrofitting for Accessibility training program. This training program is filling quickly, so respond as soon as you read this announcement. The is course is designed to educate maintenance professionals, facility managers, site access coordinators, and planners, on the barriers that can be eliminated to promote full access to recreation facilities for people with disabilities.

This course will begin the first day with the Disability Awareness Prerequisite seminar on September 13 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. This one-day course is mandatory for all participants who have not attended a previous NCA training program or seminar. The 3 day Retrofitting for Accessibilit y training program will be from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm each day until ending at 11:30 am on Thursday, September 16th. Emphasis will include application of accessibility standards, safety issues associated with accessibility, and ongoing facility maintenance r equired to assure optimum access. Participants will learn how to identify barriers and initiate appropriate solutions for facility renovations beneficial to user groups of all abilities. On-site facility and program access assessments will be included.


Clarion Inn & Suites
1100 Parkway
Gatlinburg, TN
(800) 933-0777 or (423) 436-5656
Fax: (423) 436-0695
Hotel rate is $62

Registrations: Deadline to register is July 12, 1999. Late registrations will be accepted as space allows. A $150 fee will be assessed for all cancellations after July 13.

Class Size: 35 50
Tuition: $350.00 * $100.00 (Disability Awareness)

*NPS personnel should contact NCA for tuition and authorization information.

To ensure tax exempt status for your hotel charges please provide proper government ID. Individual reservations are required. Please indicate that you are with the NCA training program.

Universal Design
Houston, TX
December 6-10, 1999

The National Center on Accessibility will be in Houston for the first week of December for the Universal Design Training Program. This course is ideal for designers, architects, engineers, and planners in park, recreation, museum outdoor education, and historic environments. The sessions will lead the participants through the needs of people with disabilities and the Principles of Universal Design. The sessions will address standards and proposed guidelines, issues unique to park and recreation environments, and innovative methods to include the widest spectrum of users. The main focus of the training program will concentrate on interior and outdoor environmental design.

This course will begin with the Disability Awareness Prerequisite Seminar on December 6th from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. This one-day course is mandatory for all participants who have not attended a previous NCA training program or seminar. The Universal Design training program will run from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm each day until ending at 11:30 am on Friday, December 10th.


Adams Mark Hotel, Houston
(713) 978-7400
Hotel rate is $79.

Reservations: Deadline to register is November 5th. Late registrations will be accepted as space allows. A $150 fee will be assessed for all cancellations after November 8th.

Class Size: 45 - 60
Tuition: $500.00* $100.00 (Disability Awareness)

*NPS personnel should contact NCA for tuition and authorization information.

Distance Learning Program

In May, the National Center on Accessibility and the National Park Service teamed up to create another successful distance learning program. This years program was a different approach as the Field Accessib ility Coordinators for Training (FACT) Program was established. This program was created to identify distance learning techniques that could be utilized to better advance the technical assistance and employee development capabilities regarding accessibili ty within the NPS. Approximately 15 individuals from a variety of regions in the NPS were nominated and participated in the training program to re-evaluate and re-energize the effort in addressing accessibility for people with disabilities. Future distance learning programs will consist of web-based learning, video conferencing, satellite, or any combination of those efforts.


The NCA has just received notification of funding from the National Park Service to conduct another Distance Learning Program in the Year 2000. This program will focus on new accessibility standards for recreation facilities and outdoor develop ed areas. Stay tuned to upcoming issues of "Access Today" to learn about this and other upcoming training programs.


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